A Path to the Stars

June 21, 2024

Escaping the war in Syria with her family when she was little, Sumaya spent her teen years in Turkey, before she made the leap of faith and came to UWC Maastricht!

She has always dreamt of being in space and knew she wanted to do something with it in the future. One of her biggest space aspirations is going to the moon! Sumaya acknowledged the fact that if she stayed in Turkey she might not get a good opportunity and it would not help in achieving her goals. That’s when she decided to search outside the borders and applied to UWC! Thanks to the Female Empowerment Project (https://www.uwcmaastricht.nl/femaleempowerment), Sumaya received a scholarship when she started her study!

Life at UWCM

Sumaya had some difficulty adapting to life in Maastricht, especially in the beginning, when her English was not yet one of her strong suits. Gradually she became more comfortable with this and grew a lot. One of the biggest things she has learned besides the curriculum classes is to find balance. She learned how to find a good harmony between sleep, school and social life, and how to not give one up for the others.

Another thing she valued during her time here, was how she was surrounded by so many different people, where she could share opinions and learn new views. “You can learn about a lot, from different aspects, different personalities, you will get new ideas, new views in like everything. That’s why I think I have grown up here a lot.”

A New Path

Her past in Syria and Turkey shaped the Sumaya who came to UWC Maastricht. Here, her friends, staff, and teachers helped her grow into a new Sumaya, creating memories she will carry with her as she embarks on her next journey after graduation. This path leads her to university, bringing her one step closer to her dream as she will be studying aerospace engineering in the US. And who knows, maybe we will see her on the moon one day!